Largely though not entirely due to my lack of interest in champagne and most other alcoholic beverages, I no longer see (if I ever did) what is so exciting about New Year's. The lavish celebrations in cities all over the world seem increasingly overdone and to constitute a kind of enforced jollity that not everyone shares. For one thing, each January 1 means we are that much more distant from the Old Order, tragically destroyed by the war whose outbreak centennial will be commemorated in 2014, for the first time separating us from a sane and (mostly) properly ordered Europe by more than a century. If only we could somehow go in the other direction, that would be something to celebrate. Nevertheless, here's hoping 2014 will be a better year than 1914 was, which should not be difficult.
Here are some round-numbered royal anniversaries coming
up in 2014. Probably the most important are the centennial of the Franz
Ferdinand assassination in Sarajevo, the bicentennial of the Bourbon
Restoration in France and all sorts of confusion in Norway, and the
tercentennial of the Hanoverian dynasty in Britain.
worldwide trend since 1910, greatly accelerated by the war that began a
century ago this year, of replacing hereditary monarchies with other
types of regimes is the greatest single political disaster to befall
humanity in modern times and indirectly responsible for most of the
others. All decent people deplore the horrors of the Nazis and the
Communists and contemporary dictatorships, but few are honest and fully
informed about the evil plague that made them possible: republicanism. Let us dedicate ourselves anew to the
reversal of this travesty and the Return of Kings throughout the world,
from Lisbon to Kathmandu.